Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Flower Power

I have long been in the quest for “Yard of the Week” from our local beautification committee.  Even before I knew there was such a thing in our community, we joked about winning this award.  So, in my continued effort to make my yard better and prettier each year, I planted a bunch of annuals this past week. 

In previous years I had pink impatiens along the front walk.  They always did great and grew really big.  But they were constantly wilting in the summer heat and I had to water them every day.  Last year I decided to try petunias.  They were all eaten by something (evil pests!) or they died from lack of sun.  There were no flowers.  It was a landscape tragedy!  So this year, in the search for a pretty, drought/heat tolerant, and shade loving flower I selected begonias to be the star of my front yard.  While these plants don’t like full sun (well hello friend, and welcome to MY YARD!) they have thick waxy leaves which supposedly help prevent water loss during hot summers.  We’ll see.  In true Sarah fashion, I bought hot pink and light pink begonias with green leaves.  They also come in “bronze leaf” variety, but I prefer the green ones.  Although according to Google, the brown leaf variety can tolerate more sun. 

I planted them every foot or so along the walk, alternating light and dark pink:




While I was at it, I put in some bright pink verbena in the mailbox bed.  I even moved the last of the liriope out so the annuals would continue uninterrupted along the edge. 



I love this plant… the little daisy like flowers grow in a circular cluster.  Aren’t they cheerful?  And you can’t beat that pop of pink! :)


I usually neglect this area because it’s too hard to drag the water hose up here… and that’s probably why we don’t win Yard of the Week.  It’s the only flower bed you can see unless you crane your neck down the hill as you are driving by to glimpse the rest of the yard.  Hope those beautification committee members are driving slowly by my house!! :) 

To make up for my past failings, this year we are sprucing up the mailbox bed.  I planted a second knockout rose bush on the other side of the mailbox and of course my new cherry tree.  I just need to move some other things around to fill in those blank spaces.  I’ve also got plans to clean up the “parking space” at the top of the yard.  Now that we have nice grass, this is another spot that is holding us back from being an award-winning yard. 


I’m also planning to put blue salvia in between the pink verbena.  I think that will complete the look!  And it will coordinate with the purple clematis on the mailbox. 


In addition to the flower beds, I also got my flower baskets back on the fence.  Like last year I again filled them with coleus, New Guinea impatiens, and lime sweet potato vine. 



The magenta impatiens (these are actually “sunpatiens” which have been bred to survive better in the sun, not that I have that problem!) aren’t all flowering just yet, so I’ll keep you posted on their progress.  Last year this same combo got so big I couldn’t keep them watered, so this year I upgraded to a bigger basket.  It looks kind of empty now, but don’t worry, it will fill in!  That coleus is called “Chocolate Cherry.”  Yummy!  :)

I rounded out my flower shopping trip with a few ferns for the back deck and the front porch.  Ferns are about the only thing I can keep alive under there. :)  That is, if I remember to water them…



Looks pretty good… the easy part is over, now onto the hard part: keeping it looking this good all summer!  :)Thanks for stopping by, if you need me I’ll be in the yard pruning, weeding or watering something…

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